Crichton Castle

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Alternative Names Crighton Castle
Site Type CASTLE
Canmore ID 53601
Site Number NT36SE 7
NGR NT 38000 61140
Council MIDLOTHIAN
Parish CRICHTON
Former Region LOTHIAN
Former District MIDLOTHIAN
Former County MIDLOTHIAN
Datum OSGB36 - NGR

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Architectural Notes

NMRS REFERENCE:
Guardianship Monument

EXTERNAL REFERENCE:
National Library, MSS of General Hutton Vol 1 No 72 - plan of church 1817 & sketch dated 1781
National Library, Scots Magazine, Sept 1808 - engraving

(Undated) information in NMRS.

Notes and Activities Click to sort results by Event date ascending

Archaeological Notes

NT36SE 7.00 38000 61140

(NT 3800 6114) Crichton Castle (NR)
OS 6" map, (1966).

NT36SE 7.01 NT 38008 61088 'Chapel'; Stables

The Object Name Book of the Ordnance Survey describes the castle as 'A very splendid specimen of the ancient Norman Stronghold presenting in its architecture the style of three different ages. Its form is quadrangular and its walls massive and of considerable height perforated at numerous places by loopholes and small doors. The large square keep in the south east side is an erection of great strength, but the remainder of the structure in a very delapidated state.
It was once the property of the celebrated Crichton, Lord Chancellor of Scotland. It is now the property of Capt. B Callender of "Preston Gate".
Name Book 1853

Crichton Castle is fully described, planned and illustrated in the Ministry of Public Buildings and Works official guidebook.
W D Simpson 1957.

As described.
Visited by OS (BS) 24 October 1975.

The basement of the late 14th Century tower, the earliest extant building at Crichton, was excavated in advance of consolidation work. The mortared foundations of the tower were cut through the natural clay subsoil which probably formed the oringinal basement floor. Two post holes, each 0.40m in diameter by 0.3m deep, lay 2.25m apart, 1.3m away from the S wall, post-dating its construction. A series of drains were the only other features. W of the tower the area underneath the late 16th-century Italianate facade was cleared. The base of an E-W running mortared wall, 1.5m wide, underlay the 16th-century work, and may be the remains of the 14th century barmkin. The N range of cellars, perhaps 15th century, the supposdly 14th-century well, and the by then ruinous W wall of the early tower, had all been extensively re-faced during the 16th-century work. Traces of a kerb and bedding material for a 16th century courtyard were also noted.
Sponsor: HBM
J Cannell 1985

Excavation inside the basement of the castle's tower house, it's earliest extant building, revealed little of interest; whereas investigations in the area of the late 16th century Italianate facade on the north side of the courtyard revealed what are thought to be the foundations of the original north range, probabaly dating to the 15th century.
Sponsor: Historic Scotland
J Lewis 1997.

NT 380 611 Turf and topsoil were removed from an area around the S and E sides of Crichton Castle in January 2003. An area of rough metalling was found directly facing the main entrance, probably the remains of an earlier access path. Also found was an area covered in demolition debris, possibly evidence of levelling work or stone robbing.
Archive to be deposited in the NMRS.
Sponsor: HS
G Ewart 2003.

NT 380 611 A watching brief was undertaken in March 2005 during the excavation of two 1m2 trenches for the installation of lightning conductors; one at the foot of the E wall of the E tower and the other in the S return of the W tower. The trench near the E tower revealed sandstone rubble, with bedrock at a depth of 0.7m. The trench to the W uncovered similar rubble, also presumably demolition debris from the castle (NT36SE 7), but did not reach bedrock in its 1m depth.
Archive to be deposited in NMRS.
Sponsor: HS.
S Hogg 2005

NT 380 611 An archaeological watching brief was undertaken in May 2006 during the excavation of a posthole to secure the base of a handrail. Nothing of archaeological significance was discovered during the excavation of this posthole. According to Historic Scotland personnel, the area had probably been much disturbed during the installation of the cobbled surface c 20 years previously.
Archive and report to be deposited in NMRS. Report lodged with CECAS.
Sponsor: Historic Scotland.
S Hogg 2006.

May 2006
 WATCHING BRIEF

Notes NT 380 611 An archaeological watching brief was undertaken in May 2006 during the excavation of a posthole to secure the base of a handrail. Nothing of archaeological significance was discovered during the excavation of this posthole. According to Historic Scotland personnel, the area had probably been much disturbed during the installation of the cobbled surface c 20 years previously.
Archive and report to be deposited in NMRS. Report lodged with CECAS.
Sponsor: Historic Scotland.
S Hogg 2006

Further details

September 2007 to October 2007
 FABRIC RECORDING

Notes NT 3800 6114 This small carved stone collection contains some interesting fragments of a coffered ceiling. Other stones in the collection include sections from fireplaces in the castle, the base of a finial and a corbel. This inventory was undertaken between September and October 2007. This and other inventories of carved stones at Historic Scotland’s properties in care are held by Historic Scotland’s Collections Unit. For further
information please contact hs.collections@scotland.gsi.gov.uk.
Funder: Historic Scotland.

Further details

November 2008 to December 2008
 STANDING BUILDING RECORDING

Notes NT 3800 6114 To make additional use of temporary scaffolding erected in two places at Crichton Castle, a short period of standing building recording took place during November and December 2008. The scaffolding in the NW scale-and-platte stair opened up access not only to the stair itself but to a suite of rooms along the top of the W range. A second scaffold at first floor level in the Great Hall of the S Range provided access to a fireplace inserted into the S elevation of the Great Hall at second floor level.
Archive: RCAHMS (intended)
Funder: Historic Scotland
Gordon Ewart – Kirkdale Archaeology

Further details

 
Books and References

Amateur, An (1819) Scenery and antiquities of Mid-Lothian, drawn and etched by an amateur, Edinburgh
Page(s): opp p.17 Held at RCAHMS D.7.21.AMA.R

Baldwin, J (1997) Edinburgh, Lothians and the Borders, Exploring Scotland's Heritage series Edinburgh
Page(s): 117-8 No. 45 Held at RCAHMS A.1.4.HER

Baldwin, J R (1985) Exploring Scotland's heritage: Lothian and the Borders, Exploring Scotland's heritage series Edinburgh
Page(s): 76-7, no. 37 Held at RCAHMS A.1.4.HER

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Charity SC026749